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The Center For The Arts Presents Five for Fighting (with String Quartet) Tyler Hilton opening
Friday, January 26th 8:00 PM Main Stage Theatre
- TICKETS ARE SOLD OUT
- General Admission Seating
- Doors open at 7:00pm
“…music with a strong sense of raw, genuine emotion.” – Sputnik Music
Never has the phrase “he shoots, he scores” been more applicable than when mentioning rabid hockey fan and chart-topping singer/songwriter John Ondrasik. The Los Angeles native, who goes by Five for Fighting (a five-minute penalty for on-the-ice fist-a-cuffs), burst on the scene some 15 years ago with his Grammy Award-nominated hit “Superman (It’s Not Easy),” and has been a mainstay on mainstream radio ever since. While he doesn’t wear tights and fight crime as his breakthrough track “Superman” suggests, his songs could bring any maniacal villain to their knees (and tears) with his poignantly sharp songs that cut deeper than a Ginsu knife.
Ondrasik signed his first deal in 1997 with “Message For Albert,” but it was his follow-up “American Town” that really took flight for Fighting. The aforementioned “Superman (It’s Not Easy)” went Platinum (as did the album), was #1 on Adult Top 40, #2 on Hot AC, and in the Top 40 Top 10. The song actually hit the airwaves, and reached #1 the same week his daughter Olivia was born. Not too shabby as Adam Sandler once said. Adding more fuel to the emotional fire, the mega-hit served as sort of an unofficial anthem following the 9.11 attacks on American soil. Naturally, he performed it at The Concert For New York City.
In his career, Ondrasik has sold over 2.5 million albums including 2004’s “Battle for Everything,” which spawned the 2X platinum “100 Years,” which continues to melt hearts, provide all ages with an instant case of nostalgia. Other hits have included “The Riddle,” “World,” “Chances” and “What If.” His music has been featured in 350 films, TV shows and advertisements ranging from the “The Blind Side” to “Hawaii Five-O.” He has also written tunes for everyone from Josh Groban to The Backstreet Boys.
Yet, there’s more to Ondrasik than the music and it’s far more important to him and countless others. “Music is the great healer as well as being a unique vehicle in raising awareness and funds for important causes,” he explains. Ondrasik has given away a million copies of a five-volume compilation album (featuring himself and other artists) he created for United States troops. He has also performed regularly for the USO.
A huge fan of Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Robert Johnson, and Muddy Waters, Hilton spent several years performing at open mic nights and clubs, and playing blues and jazz covers for tips in coffeehouses and restaurants.
Hilton moved to Los Angeles and released a self-titled independent album in 2000. He also indulged his other passion, acting, by appearing in The CW’s One Tree Hill and the indie cult favorite Charlie Bartlett, and playing Elvis Presley in the 2005 Johnny Cash biopic Walk the Line. (Hilton’s songs have been included on the Grammy Award-winning Walk the Line soundtrack and on all three of One Tree Hill’s popular soundtracks.) Hilton signed with Maverick Records and released The Tracks Of Tyler Hilton in September 2004. “I wrote all those songs when I was still in high school,” he says, “and I was very impressed that the songs I wrote while I was doing homework ended up being released on a major label. That was really exciting to me. I could have written those kinds of songs again, but I wanted to do better. And I think my new album is better.”